As for a.
We'd love to upgrade the forums to something more modern that allows for new features, but people around here are pretty vocal about not changing things. This is an open-source PunBB board, so we can't really "upgrade" it. It's what it is and that's that. There's also no way we can find to port all posts/users to a new system, so that's out too.
Sorry, wish I could.
- I agree there are a lot of older people using this forum and they by nature are resistant to change, (did you say that? Well I did) put a bit of rap over a blues riff and they are reaching for their guns! - But sadly their dated attitude is killing it off, - I am sure that you have the stats on usage, but this forum usage has reduced massively over the last year or so, - as have many other message boards because people like the quick fix of a news feed on social media, - well Facebook, many of the oldies here cannot understand Twitter, despite the fact that if they got their heads around its simple functionality they would reap a lot of benefit from it!
A few years ago I also ran a forum run by open source free software, but had to move on, - we moved on to vBulletin.
ps, - you need to change something in the settings to stop links that people put in a post taking anybody that clicks on them out of this website, - they need to open in a new tab, - we have had tab browsing for many years now!
My YouTube channel with plenty of my Joe's videos dating from 2009 inc his first Hammersmith Odeon ones:http://www.youtube.com/ian916fun